Saturday, January 30, 2010

The "BIG" Winter Storm of 2010

Okay, so I'm being sarcastic. It didn't start doing anything at my house until about 10 o'clock last night. All it was doing then was sleeting. The only metaphor I know to use, to describe what we woke up to this looked like a snowman had sneezed on our front lawn. I wouldn't even call the amount of snow on our grass a dusting. I will tell you one thing though, it's cold outside.

The funny thing about weather though, is 10 minutes down the road they got 2 to 3 inches of snow. My Parents got a lot of snow! I am kind of jealous of everyone's snow pictures on Facebook. I don't have any cute pictures of Bree, playing in the snow. I guess I could take her outside now and play...but what fun is ice?

Anyway, here's some pictures of the snowman snot:
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Friday, January 29, 2010

Well, Here Comes a Winter Storm!

The weather forecasters are calling for a Winter Storm this weekend. They say it will be both ice and snow. I seem to be the only one who is not excited about it. I know what ice means. It means power will be knocked out, and who knows when it will come back on. In 2005 we had a HUGE ice storm in which power was knocked out for a week! It was miserable. You couldn't get warm in the house. I remember going to bed wearing 5 sweatshirts, 2 pairs of sweat pants, 5 pairs of socks, a couple of hats and I still couldn't get warm. Once people's power began being restored toward Wednesday or Thursday of that week, I began living like a nomad; bouncing around from house to house that had power.

I do NOT, I repeat, I do NOT wish to live like that again!

I feel like I should go to the grocery store and get some more food, but the thought of all of the other people at the grocery store scares me off. They'll all be scurrying around, knocking bags of potato chips into their buggies (yes in the South we call grocery carts, buggies), grabbing arm loads of cookies and loaf bread. The soup aisle will be completely void of any soup whatsoever. Even the grocery store brand of soup will be wiped out. The nearest thing to finding milk, would be to find the closest cow pasture and milk a cow yourself.

I think we have enough food. I have a loaf of bread, a few cans of soup, lots of spaghetti, deli meat & cheese, peanut butter & jelly, hot chocolate, popcorn, and coffee. The only thing I don't have is creamer for my coffee, but I think I can manage without. I did, however, tell Paul to stop and pick up some batteries. If the power does go out, we have nothing to give us light. I don't have any candles. They scare me. I'd end up catching my house on fire or something.

I guess I can deal with snow, but the thought of being stuck at home kind of pisses me off. Especially on the weekend. I kind of like to have free roam on the weekend. Plus, I really just don't like Winter and all of it's weather.

So today, we'll hang around having a semi-normal day and then tonight, the storm is supposed to roll in. The high tomorrow is 31 degrees. That's a big deal here. That's too cold! God forbid we have a power outage lasting more than a few hours, but just in case we do and I don't report back here on'll know that our power lines are covered in ice and I am probably freezing my butt off.

*If you haven't submitted your questions to me for my Blogaversary, DON'T FORGET to do so!! If you have no idea what I'm talking about, or you are new to my here to find out how you can help me celebrate my Blogaversary!!*

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Thursday, January 28, 2010

Try This! Thursday - Hashbrown Casserole

As you all know, I have been sick for the last week and have found myself indulging in comfort foods. Pizza, chicken, and potatoes have been guilty pleasures for the last week. Monday night I was craving a Hashbrown Casserole. I had never made it before, so I called my Mom up and got the recipe from her. Let me tell you, it was delicious! Perfect comfort food for those of us who have been sick with a cold lately. You have got to Try This!

Hashbrown Casserole

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- 1 can of fat free cream of chicken soup
- 1 onion
- 16 ounces of fat free sour cream
- 8 ounces of fat free sharp cheddar cheese
- 1 bag of frozen cubed hashbrowns
- 1/2 cup of reduced fat butter (or margarine)
- Ritz crackers or Corn Flakes

- Combine hashbrowns, sour cream, cream of chicken soup, onion, and cheese. Mix them all together until blended well.
- Poor ingredients into a 9x13 pan
- Sprinkle cheese on top of the casserole
- Crumble up Ritz crackers, and sprinkle over the cheese and top of casserole until covered
- Drizzle melted butter over the top of the Ritz Cracker crumbs
- Bake at 350 for 45 minutes to an hour, or until bubbly

Note: In the picture above, Corn Flakes are used as topping instead of Ritz

*If you haven't submitted your questions to me for my Blogaversary, DON'T FORGET to do so!! If you have no idea what I'm talking about, or you are new to my here to find out how you can help me celebrate my Blogaversary!!*
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Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Dear E...(letter number 2)

Dear Errett,

How are you? I know you have been frustrated with what has seemed like a lack of letters from all of us, but let me assure you...we all wrote and mailed our letters to you as soon as we got your address. Evidently there is a delay in the mail. I'm blaming it on "MLK" Day last Monday, January 18.

Anyway, Mama told me that you are having to wear glasses now. I always thought that you had pretty descent eye sight. Oh well, I guess you can add that to the list of "things to get used to".

Bree and I are finally beginning to get over a nasty cold that has lasted about a week. Bree is still a little stuffy, and I have this horrible hacking cough. It is not fun.

Sam, Mama, and I were planning on going out for dinner and movie this weekend, but I don't think it's going to work out. Evidently we're supposed to get snow and ice beginning Friday. Is it Summer yet? How is the weather in Parris Island? I've been wondering about that.

Well, I know how disappointed you were about missing the Superbowl (sarcasm). The New Orleans Saints, and the Indianapolis Colts are going to battle it out at the Superbowl. I know you're like "who?", my thoughts exactly.

The President is delivering his State of the Union Address tonight. I think I'll watch Ghost Hunters instead.

How cut off are you from things like the news? Like, did you know about the earthquake in Haiti? Your friend, Brian Burzinski left with a lot of other Marines to help with aid in Haiti. He said he would be gone for 60 to 90 days, and will try to make your Graduation.

Speaking of which, your Graduation as of today, January 27th, is only 72 days away!! I know that sounds like a long time, but time seems to be getting a little faster. I wish you could know how much we all miss you. I'm sure that you miss us just as much, and Sam even more. We love you and we are all counting down the days.

Whenever you find yourself in a moment, where you feel like you don't have the strength to get through another day, remember this verse:
"I can do ALL things through Christ who strengthens me."
- Phillipians 4:13

I haven't gotten a letter from you yet, but I can't wait until I do. Until the next letter, I love you, miss you, and am a proud big Sister of a FUTURE Marine! OORAH!!

Love Always,
Your Sister

P.S: Here are a few words from Bree:
[Insert scribbles here]

*If you haven't submitted your questions to me for my Blogaversary, DON'T FORGET to do so!! If you have no idea what I'm talking about, or you are new to my here to find out how you can help me celebrate my Blogaversary!!*

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Wordless Wednesday: Mommy's Little Helper

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*If you haven't submitted your questions to me for my Blogaversary, DON'T FORGET to do so!! If you have no idea what I'm talking about, or you are new to my here to find out how you can help me celebrate my Blogaversary!!*

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Tuesday, January 26, 2010

I'm High...Off of Benadryl.

I took a Benadryl last night in an effort to keep my cough quiet long enough for me to get some sleep.

I am still drowsy...

This feeling is similar to that first little buzz you get before the weed starts to seriously kick in.

I DO NOT like this.

I wish I could give you more to read, but at the moment...I can feel my brain thinking and I'm not so sure that I like that either.

Feel free to poke fun at me...I'm just thankful I didn't take Nyquil

*If you haven't already submitted your question(s) to me for my Blogaversary, don't forget to do so!! New to my blog? Click here to read all about how YOU can help celebrate my Blogaversary!*

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Monday, January 25, 2010

Dear E...

If are new to my blog, click here and here to read about my Brother's decision to join the Marines, his departure to Boot Camp.

On Friday afternoon, we got my brother's first letter from Boot Camp. Although it was something already typed up by someone else, it was still nice to see his handwriting in the header and footer of the letter. He still has his sense of humor, which is nice, as he headed the letter to my Parents, Dear Ma & Pa,. We of course do not call my Parents "Ma" & "Pa", but E does from time to time just to be funny.

Anyway, I thought it would be fun to begin sharing with you the letters that we exchange back and forth. So, here is my first letter to him:

Dear E,
I am so glad to finally get to write you!! How are you?! I hope you are doing well, or as well as you can be. Not a day goes by when I don't think about you or pray for you.

Honestly, life has been pretty boring these last couple of weeks. Mama hasn't backed into any cars, John hasn't taken off in any mini vans (that we know of), Daddy is still Daddy, Mercy is still blind, Rainey still stinks, and Bree is still...well, crazy. Oh! Paul did get a guy in our apartment complex arrested for "public drunkenness". Good times.

We all miss you though, but we are all so very proud of you. Sam misses you a lot too. We have talked a good bit since you left. I love her! You did a great job picking her.

Anyway, I'm glad that I finally get to write you, and I can't wait to hear back from you. I want you to know that I love you, and I am so very proud of you. I can't wait to see you again. Sam and I are counting down! I love you!

Your Sister

P.S - Paul has been enjoying the XBOX since you've been gone. He's obsessed with the Batman game.

P.S.S- Bree sends you lots of hugs & snotty kisses. They are snotty because she is sick.

*If you haven't already submitted your question(s) to me for my Blogaversary, don't forget to do so!! New to my blog? Click here to read all about how YOU can help celebrate my Blogaversary!*

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Sunday, January 24, 2010

Getting to Know You

I know it's a little late on this Sunday night (unless you're on the West Coast), but I have a few moments to spare before I turn up the bottle of Robitussin and crawl to my bed. I thought I'd do a "Getting to Know You" Sunday post, that I stole from Tamara over at The (Un)Experienced Mom. Feel free to participate by leaving your answers to the questions as comments, or posting this to your own blog! Enjoy :)

1. Waffles, pancakes or french toast?
...Depends on my mood, but usually waffles.

2. Dream home..What would it look like?
...Well, it'd be on a beach somewhere, light blue with cute white shutters, beautiful decking to lead out to the beach; 3 bedrooms, a huge beautiful kitchen with dark cherrywood cabinets and marble counter tops. A large master bath complete with standing shower, jacuzzi tub, separate room for the crapper. A play room for Bree, and a large, spacious living room with antique hardwood floors.

3. Favorite sport to watch during the Winter Olympics?
...Honestly, I don't watch them. Does that make me crazy?

4. The first word that comes to mind when describing yourself?
...Crazy (that's bad isn't it?)

5. Dresses, pants (jeans, leggings, etc.) or skirts?
...I love jeans :)

6. What is your favorite time of day?
...The hours between 2 & 5 when Bree is napping and I can do whatever I want!

7. Beach or Mountains..which do you prefer?
...Oh the beach, definitely a beach person.

8.Will you watch the Super Bowl?
...Not by choice, but more by force. Want to know how I choose who to pull for? Whoever has the best colors :)

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Friday, January 22, 2010

I Has the Sniffles...

So, remember here when I wrote that Bree was sick?

Well, she has ever so graciously handed her little cold over to me.

I have been sick for two days now, and I don't think I have ever been more miserable. My head feels like someone has stuffed an entire bag of cotton balls into it, my throat is burning, I can't hear well, and I am using toilet paper as Kleenexes!

I'm going to pop a couple of Sudafed and pray to God that this doesn't last all weekend long.

Thank you to those who have already submitted questions to me for my Blogaversary! And to those of you who haven't, I'm reminding you to NOT FORGET :)

I hope you all have a great weekend!

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This Should Be Fun!!

On February 9th, Apple Juice & Milk will celebrate it's 1 year Blogaversary! I can hardly believe it has been a year since I sat down one day and decided to start a blog. I remember writing my first entry, having absolutely no idea what I was doing or why I was doing it. I just wanted a place to fuss about crap. I created Apple Juice and Milk.

Have you ever wondered how I came up with the name of my blog? Well, when I begin creating my blog, I wanted a title that symbolized Bree, because she was after all, who this blog was about. At the time, Bree was a "juice-a-holic", and addicted to milk. She was also obsessed with "goldfish crackers", among other things. I tried out many different titles, including "Goldfish Crumbs", until I finally landed on Apple Juice & Milk. I thought it was cute, and although now, Bree doesn't drink much juice...I can't seem to bring myself up to changing the title.

Since that beautiful day in February, when I launched this blog; I have written about everything from family pets, to crazy In-Laws, to family vacations. I went from absolutely no one reading my blog at all, to having 64 followers! I would have never guessed that someone would be interested in what I have to say, but I am so glad they are! I have made so many wonderful new bloggy friends, that I have grown to love.

For the last week or so, I have been trying to think of something special to do on my Blogaversary, and it finally dawned on me today. I am giving you the chance to ask me anything, anything at all, about anything you want and I swear to you that I will answer every single matter what it is!

So, from now until February 7, I am taking your questions. Remember, it can be anything! Please, please, flood my inbox with your questions! I'm excited!

You can send me your questions in an email, or you can just leave them here on this post as a comment, either way you have two weeks before all questions need to be go ahead and start thinking of a good one (or two)! Don't worry, I'll remind you...a lot.

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Thursday, January 21, 2010

Send me your Twitter Linkage!

I started my Twitter account back in the Summer, and got hooked on being able to see what my favorite celebs were doing...and then somehow I just stopped logging in. I haven't been on in a while, but that changed today. I logged on, "unfollowed" a bunch of people I was following, and "blocked" a bunch of weirdos who were following me...that I didn't know. Now, I am ready to follow you, my lovely bloggy friends! I know that I could go to each and every one of your blogs and get your Twitter links, but that would take quiet a bit of time and quiet frankly...I'm sick. I don't feel like it.

So, if you could...comment back on this post or send me an email with your Twitter links so I can follow you if I'm not already!

I was inspired by Tamara at the (Un)Experienced Mom to get back on Twitter!

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Try This! Thursday - Healthy Cheese Popcorn Snack!

I don't know about you, but Popcorn is one of my favorite snacks! I can eat a whole bucket of it at the movie theater, and I enjoy popcorn as an afternoon snack from time to time. The bad thing about our little kernel friends is that it's a healthy snack until we drown it in butter and salt. So, I found a perfect solution for our popcorn loving butt's. A healthy version of popcorn! Woo hoo! Now, we can have our favorite snack and not feel guilty about it! You have got to try this!

Cheesy Popcorn

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Cook Time: 10 minutes
Yield: 4 Servings, about 1 Cup Each

- 4 cups hot air-popped popcorn
- 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
- 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- Cayenne pepper to taste

- Toss popcorn with Parmesan & Cayenne to taste

For this recipe and others like it, click here.

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Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Wordless Wednesday II: My Baby in B&W

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Wordless Wednesday: Just Stop & Think

Take 15 minutes out of your day, and watch this video. It's pretty awesome.

Also, visit the Crazy Love website for information on the Bible Study and more! I just started this yesterday, and I can tell it's going to change my life and the way I perceive it.

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Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Random Tuesday Thoughts: Sick-Bree, Clarks & Pants on Tha Ground!

I'm doing Random Tuesday Thoughts today. I'm feeling random. But I refuse to use the little ugly purple button that everyone else uses. It just doesn't go with my color scheme :) Don't hate.

Bree is congested, and getting sick. It all started yesterday, and this morning it seems to be worse. I don't like Sick-Bree, because she is extremely grouchy. Instead of her sweet little laugh and precious little smile, I get a long drawn out nasally, whinny cry with lips curled into positions I never knew they could curl into. I'm bringing out the sedatives (totally kidding).

Paul actually got up an hour before he usually does this morning, to get ready for work. He got a shower, made coffee, and watched the news. I think it made my morning better. I hope he makes a habit out of this.

I am dying to get me some "Clarks" Wallabees, but I have to wait on Paul's bonus check...and I really don't think it's ever coming. Of course, I've got another week or so before it's time for him to get a bonus check...but still...I'm impatient. That's how bad I want those shoes.

"Pants on tha ground, pants on tha ground...lookin' like a foo with ya pants on tha ground..."

After two straight weeks of doing Jenny McCarthy's "Your Shape" workout on the Wii, I gained 5 pounds, and just as I started my 3rd week (yesterday), I have already dropped four of the five that I gained. I've always heard that when you want to lose weight, or when you switch up your workout to something harder and more vigorous, you'll gain weight first, and then it will start falling off. I hope that's true. I've got to have these last 10 pounds gone in 12 weeks, just in time for Brother's Marine Boot Camp Graduation!

I have been having lots of weird and vivid dreams lately. I have always had strange dreams, but for some reason, as of late, they seem to be more clear. Odd...wonder if it has anything to do with my exercise and eating healthier?

How many days until Summer?

Mine and Paul's 3rd Anniversary is next month, and we are planning a weekend getaway. I've never spent the night away from Bree, which sounds odd because most people with two year olds have dropped their kid off at "Grandma's" a few times. Not me. Mainly because my Mom still has a 14 year old at home, and the MIL is practically non-existent unless it's time for Paul to pay his phone bill (that's another story for another day). I'm excited though. Paul and I desperately need a night away.

I had to turn the A/C on in the house yesterday. Yes, in the middle of January. The temperature outside yesterday, got to be around 64 degrees, but the temperature in the house reached nearly 85 degrees before I broke down and agreed to turn on the air. I'm cheap. I don't know why it gets so hot in here when it's just a teeny bit warm outside, other than the fact that we are on the second floor of our Apartment Building and the guy below us sends all of his heat our way. I'm assuming this will happen again today, so I've got the A/C on stand by.

& I guess that concludes my Random Tuesday Thoughts. Feel free to comment :)

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Monday, January 18, 2010

In a World Where Everything Goes my Way...

Today as I was slaving away in the house, vacuuming floors, unloading the dish washer, yelling at Bree to "put that back!", and repeating the same routine that I do each and every day, I was thinking about how wonderful life would be if everything just... went my way.

I was thinking that in my Fantasy World, Bree wouldn't pull random things out of random places, and leave them laying in the middle of the living room floor for me to pick up later. In my Fantasy World, Paul would take his clothes & socks off the right way instead of inside out, which adds more time to the already time consuming job of folding laundry. In my Fantasy World, money would grow on trees and I would live on a "money tree farm". In my Fantasy World, Stay At Home Mom's would get paid for the hard work that they do every single day.

In my Fantasy World, there would be a beach and an ocean outside everyone's back door, no matter where they lived. In my Fantasy World, the temperature would stay at 75 degrees all year 'round and the sun would shine every day. In my Fantasy World, supper would cook itself. In my Fantasy World, Bree would have been born already potty trained. In my Fantasy World, my Parents would be my next door neighbors. In my Fantasy World, my brother would have chosen a different profession besides being a Marine.

In my Fantasy World, I would be skinnier and taller. In my Fantasy World, the bathrooms would clean themselves. In my Fantasy World, I could eat whatever I wanted and never get fat. In my Fantasy World, gasoline would be free. In my Fantasy World, the rivers would be made of coffee. In my Fantasy World, the groceries would automatically appear in the refrigerator and cabinets without any shopping involved. In my Fantasy World, sports would be exempt from television and radio.

In my Fantasy World...every day would be a vacation.

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Public Drunkenness

Where did the weekend go?

It was here, and then I blinked...and then it was gone!


BUT! I did win an award over the weekend :)

Lauren from The Lauren Daily Experiment gave me the Lemonade Stand award. Although I was completely chosen at random, I still say 'thank you!'
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Now, like every award there are rules, but I am changing the rules, because, well, quiet frankly every award has the same rules and I've run out things to say about myself & 10 bloggers to tag. You all are great, but let's face's difficult doing all of that mess. is the one and only rule!

1. - If you are reading this post, feel free to take this lemonade stand & give it to yourself! You don't even have to link back to me (although that would be nice).

There. That's done.

Moving on...

I wanted to thank everyone who commented on Friday's post about toilet paper, and for backing me up on how the toilet paper should be placed on a roll. As I had hoped, everyone agreed that the toilet paper should be placed "over". I informed Paul of this, and the toilet paper was turned "over" before the weekend ended.


My weekend was pretty dull, although, Friday was pretty interesting. We had spent the evening at home where we ordered a pizza and rented a couple of movies. Around 1:30 Saturday morning, before we went to bed, we had peered outside and noticed that a car that had been sitting in our parking lot...running...a couple of hours before, was still sitting there. This time though, the driver side door was opened, the interior car lights were on, and there was a guy in the Driver's seat slumped over. We watched him for about 15 or 20 minutes, and noticed that he never once moved. Naturally, we thought he may be dead. So, Paul called the cops and they showed up about 3 minutes later. We watched as one of the Cops shook the guy really hard, three different times, telling him to wake up; and then finally the guy moved. You could hear them arguing a bit, and then they arrested the guy for Public Drunkenness. Evidently, there were beer cans all in the car. Paul felt bad about calling the cops, but I didn' hear all kinds of stories about drunk guys wandering up into other people's homes and causing trouble. I wasn't going to take any chances.

So, that was the start of what would eventually be...a very dull weekend.

How was your weekend?

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Friday, January 15, 2010

Which Way Does the Toilet Paper Go?

The toilet paper ran out in the bathroom the other day, and Paul took it upon himself to re-stock it. I know what you're thinking, Wow! My husband just waits until he's sitting on the crapper, so that he can yell for me to get him some toilet paper. Well, he does that too, but I'm not sure which annoys me most...the yelling for me to get him some toilet paper or the fact the he puts the toilet paper under instead of over.

To me, there is nothing about putting the toilet paper under that makes any sense whatsoever. It's harder to get to, harder to tear, and for some reason, sometimes, the paper clings to the rest of the roll and it's hard to find the part you need to tear off. You are left sitting there on the porcelain throne, rolling that toilet paper around and around, trying to find that subtle little line that lets you know that this where you need to start. I'm sorry, but when I use the potty, I want to use the potty and get out of there; I don't want to spend the time, trying to find where to detach the toilet paper from the rest of the roll. Now, men on the other hand, could spend hours sitting on the toilet (that's another story for another day), reading, watching t.v, etc. I am even sure they would prefer to take their meals on the potty.

Anyway, after Paul put the toilet paper on wrong, I decided that I would test it out; to prove a point. All three times that I went to the potty, I found it more inconvenient to tear off the paper when the roll is under than when it's over.

So...what do you think? How do you like your toilet paper? Over or Under?
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Thursday, January 14, 2010

Try This! Thursday - Pimiento Cheese Snacks

I love, love, love Pimiento Cheese like nobody knows! But, it's not usually very healthy. Most Pimiento Cheese is packed with mayonnaise, fattening cheese, and who knows what else that will make our bellies bigger. UNTIL I found this recipe for a healthy Pimiento Cheese snack! Once you make it all up, spread it over some whole wheat crackers and you've got yourself a snack! You have got to try this!

Pimiento Cheese Snacks

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Cook Time: 15 minutes
Yield: 1 1/2 Cups

- 1 1/2 cups shredded reduced-fat sharp Cheddar cheese
- 1/4 cup low-fat mayonnaise
- 1 4-ounce jar sliced pimientos, drained and chopped
- 2 tablespoons minced scallions
- Hot sauce to taste (optional)

- Combine cheese, mayonnaise, pimientos, scallions and hot sauce (if using) in a medium bowl.

Note: You can make ahead of time and refrigerate for up to 3 days.

For this recipe & more like it, click here

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Wednesday, January 13, 2010

An Extra Wednesday Tid Bit - Strange Dreams

I woke up around 2 a.m this morning, and realized that I could see the time on the clock without squinting. Without my contacts or glasses, I am as blind as a bat. No lie. At first I thought it was some kind of miracle. My blindness had been healed! But then I could feel my eye lids sticking to my eye balls, and my eyes had this terrible dry feeling. I realized I had forgotten to take my contacts out before bed. Talk about your disappointment.

Oh well, I should have known that there is no such thing as a miraculous healing while you are asleep. I took the contacts out, and hopped back into bed...quickly falling back to sleep.

Once asleep, I fell into a dream about my brother (yes, the one who is in Marine Boot Camp right now). I have dreamed about him every night since Sunday night (when he left). It's been kind of nice, but it does make me miss him a little more. Maybe this is my subconscious's way of hanging out with him without actually hanging out with him. It was a nice dream. My dreams generally have some type of goal that I am trying to accomplish, and in this dream...I was trying to find him the perfect birthday present. Odd since his birthday isn't until August. I wonder if I will continue to have these dreams for the next 13 weeks?

Image and video hosting by TinyPicMy next dream was about Mike Delfino from Desperate Housewives (yes, I'm obsessed). Now, Mike Delfino is one of the sexier men on Wisteria Lane, and this dream was of no exception. I dreamed that he was "dating" this other woman (in the dream, the other woman was this girl who I used to work with but haven't seen or thought of in a long time), although, he and I had been together & we were secretly still in love with each other. In the dream I convinced him to leave the other woman, and come back to me, because he knew we were meant to be. What the hell? It was a nice dream, no doubt, but where does this come from? Evidently I think I am Mike Delfino's type, although, I look nothing like Susan Mayer. *sigh*

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Wordless Wednesday: We're Gonna Hop Down to Electric Avenue

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Tuesday, January 12, 2010

"Diego is Cool"

Image and video hosting by TinyPicMy two year old daughter informed me this morning that, "Diego is cool." I would hardly put Go Diego! Go! in the category of "cool", but evidently Bree thinks that this Diego kid is something special.

I really wanted to ask Bree how she knows what to classify as "cool". Her little two year old mind never ceases to amaze me. She knows more than I think she does, and she pays attention more than I think she does. She has the lyrics to songs memorized (she loves Paparazzi by Lady Gaga), and she can read the word "pizza" (whether it be on a sign, piece of paper, or box). She has said her first cuss word (shit), and she knows that the golden arches (McDonalds) produces cheeseburgers in which she yells out in the backseat, "I want cheese!". Now, on top of all of this, she knows how to classify something as being "cool"?

I demand that someone invent a "pause" button, because my two year old is growing up too fast. Next thing I know she'll be telling me about the birds & the bees, singing lyrics to songs that she doesn't need to know the words to, and cussing like a sailor!

Okay, maybe I'm being a little dramatic...


Monday, January 11, 2010

And He is Off...

Wow! What a weekend! An emotional weekend at that, but I'm very thankful to have been able to spend it with my brother before he left yesterday afternoon for Marine Boot Camp. To read previous posts on my brother leaving, click here and here.

Saturday night, our rather large (in size, not weight) family went out to eat for dinner to celebrate my Brother's departure for Boot Camp the next day. My Parents, brother & his girlfriend, my other brother & his friend, and Me, Paul & Bree packed ourselves around two rectangular tables that they had to push together, at the International House Of Pancakes. Yes my friends, that means IHOP.

Now, you wouldn't think that IHOP would be a place someone would want to go for their last big meal of the next 13 weeks, but IHOP holds a special place in our hearts. We have been going to IHOP since my 14 year old brother could eat free (and that's only for kids 3 and under). Errett chose to eat at IHOP when he graduated from High School, and IHOP has been the chosen restaurant for many of our family celebrations. This is just how we roll. We like IHOP. Betcha didn't know that IHOP could be used that many times in just a few sentences...

Bree spent most of dinner, screaming at the end of the table. She is usually relatively good when we go out, but that night she had an audience and she was performing. We still had fun. We're a fun family. Seriously. Before we left, Errett's girlfriend Sam (she and I share the same name), made sure we all got a picture together:
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(From left to right: John-my 14 year old brother, my Daddy & Mama, Errett & Sam, Me, Bree & Paul)

We are a fine looking group of people, aren't we? Seriously, Best. Family. Ever.

I was a little nervous when Sunday morning rolled around. I wasn't sure what to expect, and I wasn't sure if the entire process of leaving would go quickly or not. We had planned to get there early, and we took lots of pictures together as we waited on the others to arrive.
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We actually hung around the Recruiters Office for about an hour, talking & laughing, before it became that time. But once it became that time, everything went relatively quickly. My brother hugged us all, we said our goodbyes, he hopped in a mini-van (there were only 3 of them leaving) and vrooooom!, off they went. Seriously, that mini-van went barreling out of the parking lot on two wheels!

So then I cried

I had managed to keep my tears to myself while Errett was there, but as soon that crazy mini-van left the parking lot...the tears pushed through the surface of my eyes and leaked down my cheeks. I knew I was going to miss him like crazy.

The anticipation of him leaving has passed. He is gone now, and we won't see him for another 13 weeks...but I know that this time will pass quickly. I know that, even though he will be a lot bigger than me in a few weeks...he is still my little brother and I will be so proud of him.


Friday, January 08, 2010

Awww Yay!

I was very fortunate to receive two award this week! One from Mrs. M over at "I've Changed My Name to Mommy", and one for Shandal at "My Life in 3D". Thank you both so much!

first one that I received from Mrs. M was the Happy 101 award. Although, I have already received this award recently, I was still very honored to get it again! Thank you Mrs. M!!! The rules of this award are to "List 10 things that make you happy, try to do at least one of them today" and to "Tag 10 bloggers that brighten your day" and then link to the person who gave you the award.
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So, here are 10 Things that Make Me Happy
1 - My Family (all of them, Mom, Dad, 2 brothers, Hubs and Breezy)
2 - Chocolate (unfortunately)
3 - Coffee in the mornings
4 - New Shoes
5 - The Summertime
6 - Working Out
7 - Blogging
8 - My Friends
9 - Soup on a cold, cold day
10 - Sleep!

& Here are the 10 Blogs that Brighten My Day
1 - Confessions From a Working Mom
2 - Becoming Me
3 - We Laugh Until We Cry
4 - Lessons Learned
5 - Menopausal New Mom
6 - My Life in 3D
7 - Our B Life
8 - ...Stay At Home Wifey
9 - So Many Kids, So Little Time
10 - Imperfect Daisies

The next award is from Shandal from "My Life in 3d". It's the "Beautiful Blogger Award", I haven't received this one before, so I am super excited! The rules for the award is that I have to tell you 7 interesting things about myself, and then pass the award on to 7 other bloggers!.
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Here are 7 Interesting Things about Myself:
1 - I secretly enjoy watching Kai Lan with Bree :)
2 - I make jokes to keep from crying.
3 - I watch "Moulin Rouge" whenever I am depressed.
4 - The New Super Mario Brothers game on the Wii is too cool for school!
5 - I have been counting down the days for Summer since it ended in September.
6 - I feel guilty about things I shouldn't.
7 - I enjoy staying at home all week long with Bree, and keeping the house clean.

Here are 7 Blogs that I am also awarding this award too:
1 - In the Trenches
2 - Nicely Composed
3 - Speaking From the Crib
4 - You Don't Know
5 - The Crazy Baby Mama
6 - The (Un)Experienced Mom
7 - 4 Kids & a Large Coffee

Whew! That was a lot of work! Now, I have to go and let everyone know they won something! Thank you again Mrs. M & Shandal!


Poot On Friday

Generally, I would be more than thrilled that it is Friday, but not today. My brother leaves Sunday morning at 10 a.m for Marine Boot Camp. If you missed Monday's post about this, click here. I did, however, learn this past week that I would be able to write him. That made me happy, as I plan to write him every day and then send the letters at the end of the week. I think we are all just ready for Sunday to come and go already. The anticipation is, I'm sure, worse than the actual event will be and although I am positive that there will be many tears shed Sunday morning when he gets on that bus...we'll be okay.

Last night we had supper with my Parents, and my two brothers. Errett, the brother leaving, seemed to be more at ease about everything, although I know he has a knot in his stomach. The funny part about last night is that the Military Channel was showing a three hour documentary on Parris Island Marine Boot camp. This is where Errett will be going, so we watched it. The show actually put me a little more at ease, as I got to see the things my brother would be doing during his 12 week stay. Although, I am sure that the documentary was sugar coated a still looked tough.


It was supposed to snow here last night, and it did...but not much. I wasn't enthused. Of course, I never am. There were some icy patches on the road on the way home last night that we had to be aware of, but other than that...nothing. I just wish it would get warm already. This "colder than usual" climate change we've got going on, is getting rather annoying.

Not much planned for this weekend. Just hoping to spend more time with my brother before Sunday. What do you all have planned?


Thursday, January 07, 2010

Dear Winter...

Dear Winter,

I have never liked you. You know this. But I am beginning to like you even less these days. This is the South, you are supposed to leave us alone. We do not like 17 degree weather, and we do not know how to cope with it hanging around for days. Perhaps if you brought with you some snow, we may could tolerate you more. With snow, we wouldn't have to get outside to go to work and school. We could just stay in and enjoy a snow day. Instead, you've talked the sun into hanging out while you freeze us to death! Now, what good is the sun if it isn't warm?

Which brings me to my next point. I am not meant to live in a cold climate. I was meant to live in a climate that stays relatively warm year round, with the occasional cold days. Since you have already used up your "cold days", it would be nice if you just went on and bothered someone else. Let Spring come in early. We all are praying that the stupid Groundhog won't see his shadow this year. Looks to me that if there are this many people who don't want you around anymore, you would just leave.

I know that you have a couple of more months of weather to own, but maybe you could just pass it on to Spring and go on a vacation or something. Yeah, you should go on a vacation! It must take a lot of energy to make the air this cold, and making this many people miserable must be weighing heavily on your conscious. You should take a vacation; you deserve it. I hear the North Pole is nice this time of year.

Anyway, I hope you heed what I have said, and I do hope that you go on that vacation. Who knows, maybe you'll like the vacation so much that you will never come back! Wouldn't that be great?!


Try This! Thursday - Broccoli Rabe, White Bean and Fontina Pasta

So, it's 2010 and a lot of people are looking for healthy recipes and meal ideas for their families so that they can get their families healthier. I know I am. Now, we eat pretty healthy already, but not near as healthy as we should. We don't cook anything fried, we eat whole wheat pasta, whole wheat bread, and try to put some type of veggie with every supper. My problem is that we get stuck cooking the same things over and over again, and I'm ready to add some variety to our family dinners. I absolutely LOVE pasta, and I was pretty excited when I found this recipe. Besides it being healthy, it's super quick too! So, try this!

Broccoli Rabe, White Bean & Fontina Pasta

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Cook Time: 15 minutes
Yield: 4 servings, 1 1/2 Cups Each

- 8 ounces whole-wheat shells, fusilli or chiocciole
- 1 large bunch broccoli rabe, trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces, or 8 cups baby spinach
- 1 1/2 cups vegetable broth or reduced-sodium chicken broth
- 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 19-ounce can cannellini beans, rinsed
- 2 tablespoons red-wine vinegar
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
- 1/2 cup shredded fontina cheese
- 2/3 cup Toasted Breadcrumbs, optional (see Tip)

- Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add pasta and cook, stirring occasionally, according to package directions. Stir in broccoli rabe (or spinach) during the last 2 to 3 minutes. Drain. Dry the pot.

- Whisk broth and flour in a small bowl until smooth. Heat oil in the pot over medium-high heat. Add garlic and cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add the broth mixture and bring to a simmer, whisking constantly, until it thickens, 3 to 4 minutes. Add beans, vinegar, salt and pepper and the pasta and broccoli rabe (or spinach). Cook, stirring, until the mixture is heated through, about 1 minute. Remove from the heat; add cheese, stirring until it melts. Serve immediately, topped with Toasted Breadcrumbs, if using.

- To make toasted breadcrumbs, trim the crusts from 2 slices of whole-wheat sandwich bread. Tear the bread into pieces and process in a food processor into coarse crumbs. Toss breadcrumbs with 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil and a pinch of salt in a small bowl. Cook in a large skillet over medium heat, stirring often, until golden and crisp, 3 to 5 minutes.

To print out this recipe, or to see more like this, click here


Wednesday, January 06, 2010

Tuesday, January 05, 2010

It's Frigid!

It's that time of the month for me, and I just did not feel like working out this morning. In fact, I have been pretty slack since the week of Christmas. I have exercised maybe two or three times a week since then, but the last two weeks I have only mustered out about two days a week. Is that bad? I have 10 pounds that I want to lose within the next 12 weeks, so I know if I want to accomplish that...I need to get on the ball. Hopefully after Wednesday is over, I can get back on the ball. 3 day periods are nice.

It is frigid cold here in the South. We do not normally experience temperatures such as these. It got down to 16 degrees last night, and today's high is only 32. To which I say, "Dear Summertime, could you hurry up please?" I hope that this is as cold as it will get, although, I read a headline of an article today that read: "Most of the United States is cold, and getting colder" Well that sucks. How is that Global Warming theory working out for you Mr. Gore? It really is ridiculous though, and I don't know who in their right mind could actually enjoy these temperatures. There is nothing fun about it. You walk outside, and you instantly feel like a popsicle (of no particular flavor). There is no snow. Just wind. Meanwhile, my gas bill is going to be through the roof because the heat can't stop running. "Dear Summertime, please hurry! I can't afford Winter." And poor Bree, she doesn't want to wear a jacket. She's like me. She just wants to slip on some flip-flops and pair of shorts and be ready to go. Sunday morning I dressed her in a sweater, tights, and blue jeans, and then forced her to put her big, fluffy pink snow jacket on. She fussed, and screamed, and kept shrugging the jacket off of her shoulders. I kept putting it back on her, assuring her that she needed it. It was 18 degrees outside; she would thank me.
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How cold is it where you live?


Monday, January 04, 2010

Back to life. Back to Reality.

Marine Corps Pictures, Images and PhotosThe Holidays have come and gone, and reality has come back around. I am very thankful that I got to spend the Holidays with my family this year, because this is going to be a sad week for us all. Not because we won't be up each other's butt's, breathing each other's air, like we have been for the last two weeks...but because my brother leaves to start his life in the Marine Corps. on Sunday.

A part of me feels like we are all over re-acting about the whole thing. I mean, he'll be gone for 12 weeks, home for 10 days and then most likely stationed somewhere close to home. Once he gets out of Basic Training (or Bootcamp), we'll be able to talk to him everyday if we want. I guess it's just those 12 weeks, those 3 months, that scares us the most. He'll be able to make one phone call when he arrives at Parris Island, and that will be just to say, "Hey, I'm here. Bye." I hope he doesn't call me. That would be a phone call worth crying over.

The other part of me is sad, because my little brother is about to embark on some BIG adventures. The protective big sister instinct kicks in, but then I have to remind myself that he'll be the one doing the protecting. Not me.

The worst part of it all is that I will just miss him.

I know that he is going to be okay though, and I know that when he gets out of this...I am going to be so proud of him. He is going to be proud of himself, and that is what is most important.

This is going to be a strange week for us all, and I hope that the anticipation of all of this is worse than the event will actually be. I'm sure it is. Nevertheless, keep us all in your prayers and especially my brother as this is something that we have never experienced within our own family.


Saturday, January 02, 2010

Our New Years

We rang in the New Year at my Parent's house. They threw a party of pretty descent size. There were people from our church there, and other friends. It was pretty loud, but we had lots of fun and Bree went all night long too. Most kids would have passed out on the couch before midnight, but not my Bree. She was up and awake until we left my Parent's house around 2 a.m. The best part of the New Years Eve Party is that it was a Pajama Party. So I was comfortable in my new pink, brown and white plaid P.J pants and pink shirt that I got for Christmas (via the Mother-In-Law). Here are a few pictures from New Years Eve:
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The first picture is my Mom's Christmas tree, which she transformed into a New Years Tree for the occasion, and the second picture is me in my P.J's :)
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The first picture is my Mom & Dad in their P.J's & the second picture is Bree around 1:30, pants-less, wearing the New Years hat & helping my Mom clean.

Of course we slept in on New Years Day, and then headed back over to my Parent's house around 3. My Mom cooks an awesome New Years Day meal complete with Mac & Cheese, pork, & Hop-N-Johns. Now, for those of you who don't know what Hop-N-Johns is, it's pretty much rice, black eyed peas, and collards all fried together in a frying pan and then you add bacon to it when ready to eat. I never liked collards until my Mom started making this.
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From my Mom's house we had to meet the Father-In-Law for supper. Now, we couldn't tell him that we had already eaten at my Mom's house for supper, because, well, that opens up a whole 'nother blog for another time. So, we had to act like we were hungry. I was far from hungry. I had just eaten my weight in Mac&Cheese, and Apple Pie. The last thing I wanted to do was eat...again. But I did. I ordered an appetizer, and I had to eat a Salad too. I picked through my salad, ate two chicken tenders and felt like I was going to go into a coma from eating so much. The Hubs said that wasn't possible, but the way I felt...I was sure it was. I have never been more miserable than I was last night. My tummy felt like it was going to rip open.

I came home & went to bed.

Today, we are enjoying an afternoon at home, and tonight...well, the Hubs & I have a date!

How was everyone's New Years?